For surveyed cost and value of making improvements on homes, click here. You will be surprised at the some of the numbers - I know we were!

Home Price Comparison Index shows the most expensive and most affordable cities in the US.

United States New Home Prices: 1978 - 1999
Source: US Census Reports; Nat'l Assn of Home Builders  
Year Median Average Quality
Adjusted
Index*

* The Quality Adjusted Index is designed to measure changes over time in the sales price of new single-family homes which are the same with respect to several important physical characteristics, including: floor area; geographic division; inside or outside of a metropolitan area (MSA); number of fireplaces, bathrooms, and bedrooms; type of parking facility; type of heating, foundation, and exterior; and whether the unit has a deck. The weight for the index is the proportion of all housing units sold in 1992 of that type. 1992 = 100.

Sources:
Median and average prices
- U.S. Bureau of the Census.
Quality Adjusted Index - NAHB.

Go to Census Bureau Monthly Updates of Construction Statistics

1978 $55,700 $ 62,500 53.7
1979 62,900 71,800 61.8
1980 64,600 76,400 68.1
1981 68,900 83,000 73.5
1982 69,300 83,900 75.2
1983 75,300 89,800 76.8
1984 79,900 97,600 79.9
1985 84,300 100,800 80.9
1986 92,000 111,900 84.1
1987 104,500 127,200 88.6
1988 112,500 138,300 91.9
1989 120,000 148,800 95.6
1990 122,900 149,800 97.4
1991 120,000 147,200 98.7
1992 121,500 144,100 100.0
1993 126,500 147,700 104.3
1994 130,000 154,400 109.3
1995 133,900 158,700 112.4
1996 140,000 166,400 114.5
1997 146,000 176,200 118.4
1998 152,500 181,900 121.0